For the second time at this year’s Glorious Goodwood, it was all about Tom Queally, Sir Henry Cecil and Prince Khalid Abdullah.
Three days after they were toasting Frankel’s sensational victory in the QIPCO Sussex Stakes, they were the centre of attention again as Midday made history by winning the Group 1 Nassau Stakes for the third time - and third time in three years at that.
No horse has done that before and you’d bet on it being a long, long time before another repeats the feat.
The crowd raised the roof as their favourite filly held off main challenger Snow Fairy, ridden by Frankie Dettori, with a bit to spare.
It was a fittingly upbeat end to a memorable festival as the sun came out for another huge crowd - although the day was overshadowed by two nasty incidents - a collision which saw three horses and jockeys come a cropper in the second race and left former champion jockey Ryan Moore in hospital with a broken shoulder and a runaway horse who flattened a groom, Tim Jarvis, and left him also needing to go to hospital.
Midday held her Nassau crown by two lengths from Snow Fairy. It was her sixth Group 1 race and trainer Cecil is now thinking of aiming her at the Yorkshire Oaks - and possibly the culmination of the QIPCO British Champions’ Series at Ascot in October.
Cecil added: “I was delighted with her today, it was a great achievement on her part.
“She quickened up well and hopefully she will go for the Yorkshire Oaks but I’ll feel my way with her. She will tell us what we should do.
“She was beaten by a good filly (Misty For Me) in Ireland and even though she’s won so many Group Ones, I think she is genuinely unlucky not to have won two or three more.”
Queally added: “She’s the queen of Goodwood now. She loves it here. She’s very special, she’s special to me and everyone at the yard. She’s a sweetheart.
“What a week - it’s been brilliant. I was conscious that Frankie (Dettori) was thereabouts (on Snow Fairy) but I just gave her a smack and made her mind up for her.”
The day’s other big race, and in fact the final card’s greatest spectacle, the Blue Square Stewards’ Cup, was taken by Kieren Fallon on Hoof It.
Mick Easterby’s runner was carrying a 6lb penalty following success at York and was forced to concede weight to each of his rivals. But having been covered up in the middle of the pack early, Fallon produced his mount to lead in the last of the six furlongs and he was never in danger of being caught.
The 13/2 joint-favourite won by two-and-a-half lengths over Tax Free at the line. The other joint-favourite, Mac’s Power, was third.
Fallon said: “He’s done nothing but improve. Mick walked the course this morning and he told me to go to the far side so it made my job easier. I think he will be (a Group One horse).”
Hoof It is jointly owned by golfer Lee Westwood.
If the day’s two big races were the high points, they were somewhat overshadowed by serious injuries suffered by Sussex-based rider Moore and stable lad Tim Jarvis in separate incidents.
Moore was hurt during the The Toyo Tires Summer Stakes when Captain John Nixon broke down, suffering a serious injury and bringing down rivals Activate and Verdant.
Activate’s rider Jamie Spencer was soon back on his feet, although did retire hurt after riding one more race, but Moore, who rode Verdant, laid on the turf for some time before being loaded into an ambulance and taken to St Richard’s Hospital, from where it was reported he had suffered a broken shoulder and broken thumb and would probably miss the rest of the season.
In the remainder of the race, Icon Dream was on the front end for a long time and put up a bold bid for victory but he was mowed down late on by the Robert Mills-trained 12-1 shot Petara Bay, ridden by Sussex-based Jim Crowley.
There was similarly unwelcome drama before the sixth race, the Best Western Horses Help Heroes Nursery Stakes, when Kieren Fallon’s mount Multi Blessing shook him off and ran loose.
He sprinted along the straight and past the finishing line, ploughing straight into Jarvis, son of trainer Alan Jarvis, one of a group of grooms who had gathered in the hope of stopping him. The groom lied prone and was quickly attended to by paramedics, while the emergency ambulance that had been stationed at the start was driven along the track.
He was unconscious for a while but came to and was treated for ten minutes or so before being taken to St Richard’s, at which point the race could get under way.
When it did, George Baker on Bayleyf took the prize, beating Es Que Love, whose second place was the latest in a series of such placings for Sebastian de Sousa.
The other three races may have been drama-free by comparison but were absorbing enough contests.
Son Of The Cat posted a comfortable victory in the bluesquare.com Stewards’ Sprint Stakes, the opening event on the final day.
The so-called consolation prize for horses that failed to make the cut in the Stewards’ Cup proved very one-sided in the closing stages as Franny Norton only had to push out Son Of The Cat to score by a length and three-quarters from Confessional.
The fifth race of the day saw more Sussex success as stalwart Arundel trainer John Dunlop enjoyed his first win of the festival, watching Richard Hills ride Nawwaar first home in the Overtones EBF Schiaparelli Maiden Stakes.
The final contest of the 35 seen during Glorious was the Telegraph Apprentice Stakes and it was claimed by Kieran O’Neill on Albaqaa (10/1). Runner-up was Patrick Hills on Night Lily.
Don’t miss the Chichester Observer on Thursday for a full look back at Glorious 2011.